The maximum ice sheet extent and its retreat in the western part of the Holy Cross Mountains, Poland, during the Sanian 2 Glaciation/MIS 12 based on geological data and analysis of karst phenomena

Jan Dzierżek, Leszek Lindner, Krzysztof Cabalski, Jan Urban, Michał Cyglicki


The paper is focused on the palaeographic development of the western part of the Holy Cross Mountains, Poland, during the maximum extent of the Sanian 2 (MIS 12) ice sheet and its retreat. The studies were based on archival cartographic data, coupled with new lithological and petrographic analyses of limni- and fluvioglacial sands, i.e., grain-size composition, quartz grain morphology and heavy mineral analysis, as well as analysis of the erratic material of tills. The results confirm the regional variability of the erratic material in the Sanian 2 tills and point to the long-term development of fluvioglacial sands cover documenting cold climate conditions. They also evidence that the western part of the Holy Cross Mountains was the area where two oppositely directed ice sheet lobes (Radoszyce and Sandomierz) advanced during the Sanian 2 Glaciation and that deglaciation of the area took place in two stages. Huge quantities of meltwater released at that time contributed to the intensification of earlier initiated karst phenomena, as well as filling of the existing caves by fluvioglacial sands.


Central Poland; Glacial deposits; Cave deposits; Palaeogeography; Middle Pleistocene

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